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King James I of England and VI of Scotland

(1566-1625), Reigned Scotland 1567-1625 and England 1603-25

Sitter associated with 199 portraits
The son of Mary, Queen of Scots and Lord Darnley, James was crowned King of Scotland in 1567, at the age of one on the abdication of his mother, and the country was run until his majority by a succession of Protestant Regents. He succeeded Elizabeth I in 1603. His commitment to peace and reconciliation balanced religious divisions, and he successfully held the three kingdoms of England, Scotland and Ireland together under one ruler for the first time. Intelligent and scholarly, his greatest act of cultural patronage was probably the 'King James' translation of the Bible (1611). James's financial incompetence and his devotion to a succession of male favourites fuelled his critics, particularly after his death.

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